Giving Back in Tanzania
In 2006, the Tanzanian government made secondary education one of its highest priorities and made it mandatory to have a secondary school in every ward across the country. The Mateves Secondary school was established on April 10, 2006. It is located eighteen kilometers west of Arusha, Tanzania, in the Ngorbob village, which is part of the Mateves ward, Mukulat Division within the Arusha District Council. At that time there were 123 students and 8 teachers. The school had no classrooms — space had to be borrowed from a neighbor.
Mountain Madness, African Environments, and Around-n-Over have partnered to raise money for the Mateves Secondary School, and we are pleased to see the progress that has been made over the past several years.
However, there is always work to be done to create enough space for the children to learn. Every year, the government assigns a new “batch” of secondary school students to all government schools, which means Mateves enrollment continues to increase. Since 2006, the school has reached approximately 1,200 students and is expected to continue growing to 1,600.
Through the help of generous donors, 11 classrooms have ben finished and more are in the works. In order to lower classroom sizes even to 50 students per room, the number of classrooms will need to at least triple. Donations are the main source of funding for these new buildings.
It is noteworthy that in the first Form II National Examination taken at Mateves, 100 of the 123 students passed and were moved on to Form III. This is above the national average!
Mountain Madness is pleased to have helped create a way for our trekkers to assist in the construction efforts. Mountain Madness has raised money through our Kilimanjaro treks and visited the school on a number of occasions.
Mountain Madness is also happy to help you arrange service projects. If you would like to contribute more directly and visit the school, Mountain Madness can arrange this before or after your climb and safari. If you have a special skill set, such as teaching or construction, we could arrange for a service trip to Mateves to put your skills to work. Please call our office for details.
Every little bit counts. One small gesture that created a great impact on the students’ happiness was when Mark Gunlogson, MM President, took a basketball hoop down to the school before his December 2013 Kilimanjaro summit climb. The children were ecstatic about this newest addition.
To give you a better idea of what it will take to expand this school to accommodate the increasing enrollment, here are some figures:
Cost per classroom:
Walls, including ring beam
Floor and wall plastering inside and out
One window (each classroom typically has 10 windows)
Ceiling board installation
Wall paint and painter
Pack with a Purpose
We are proud members of Pack for a Purpose, an initiative that allows travelers like you to make a lasting impact in the community at your travel destination. If you save just a few kilos of space in your suitcase and take supplies for area schools or medical clinics in need, you’ll make a priceless impact in the lives of our local children and families.
Please click here to see what supplies are needed for our project.
The International Mountain Explorers Connection was founded in 1996 in Boulder, Colorado to promote responsible and sustainable connections between travelers and the people of developing mountain regions of the world. Through its Porter Assistance Project, IMEC is focusing its efforts on improving the working conditions for porters on Kilimanjaro and in Nepal.
Promoting Sustainable Tourism
According to the World Tourism Organization (WTO), Nepal and Tanzania are among the 10 poorest countries in the world, yet of the least developed countries are in the top three in terms of tourism revenue. The International Mountain Explorers Connection is actively following the WTO Sustainable Tourism Eliminating Poverty (STEP) program to promote responsible, sustainable tourism that facilitates benefits from tourism “trickling down” to all members of the local population.
In addition to Boulder, Colorado, we currently have offices near Mount Kilimanjaro in Tanzania and, in collaboration with Kathmandu Environmental Education Project, at their Porter Clothing Bank in Kathmandu, Nepal. These offices store gear for the porters, raise awareness among tourists regarding porter issues, and conduct educational programs for the porters.
We depend on grants and donations to fund our projects. Please consider making a donation and help make a difference in the lives of porters in Nepal and Kilimanjaro.
The Porter Assistance Project Seeks To:
Provide individual porters, mountain crew, and climbing companies with a convenient and inexpensive means of equipping their crew with high quality clothing.
Offer English language, First Aid, HIV/AIDS Awareness, and Money Management classes in order to motivate and empower porters.
Educate the tourist population about acceptable standards of porter treatment.
Stockpile water and wind resistant jackets and pants, quick-drying synthetic “base” layers, gloves, socks, hats, sunglasses, and footwear. The equipment — donated by manufacturers, ski schools, and individuals — is available for all mountain crew and tour operators to borrow. All that is required is a small, refundable deposit.
Porter Assistance Offices:
- Kathmandu, Nepal
- Moshi and Arusha, Tanzania
- Outside of the Machame, Marangu and Rongai gates of Kilimanjaro